Missing Aussie’s family believes he may have travelled to the U.S. from Whistler 

Police Briefs: Teenager escapes assailant in Pemberton; friends arrested for obstructing officers

click to enlarge PHOTO SUBMITTED - STILL MISSING Australian Jake Kermond told his family before he disappeared that he planned to travel to the United States. He's been missing since April 30.
  • Photo submitted
  • STILL MISSING Australian Jake Kermond told his family before he disappeared that he planned to travel to the United States. He's been missing since April 30.

While Whistler police have yet to locate an Australian who was first reported missing last month, the man's family believes he may be travelling through the United States.

Jake Kermond was first reported missing on April 30 after staff at a hotel he was staying at noticed his belongings appeared to have been abandoned in his room. The 19-year-old was last seen in the hotel's lobby on April 26, when he extended his stay by two days, and told staff that he was "short on funds" after losing his wallet on the mountain.

Police have no evidence to suggest foul play was a factor.

Kermond's parents told RCMP they haven't heard from their son since his disappearance, and that it's normal for him not to be in regular contact.

Kermond also reportedly told his family before going missing that he planned to enter the United States to renew his Canadian travel visa, and that he had met someone he intended on travelling to New Orleans with.

Whistler RCMP, however, have "nothing to indicate he's crossed the border," said Staff Sgt. Steve LeClair.

"We're not sure what's going on there," he added. "We're still continuing with our efforts to locate him and we've updated Canada Border Services."

A liaison officer in Australia is currently following up on several inquiries as well, LeClair said.

Police have also followed up on several possible sightings of Kermond, and have so far been unable to track down anyone in Whistler who knew him personally.

"He really kept to himself," LeClair said. "I think there was one person identified on his Facebook page (who knew him), and I don't think we've been able to reach that person."

LeClair admitted the case struck him as odd, before adding: "The fact that the family is not concerned guides us to some extent, but we're still taking it seriously.

"We're still trying to locate him and we've expended significant effort to do so, and we'll continue to do so until he's located."

RCMP is asking for anyone with information about Kermond's location to call 604-932-3044.

Thirteen-year-old girl escapes assailant in Pemberton

A 13-year-old girl escaped a man who allegedly tried to abduct her near a Pemberton gas station on Sunday, May 10.

The girl told police she was riding her bike shortly after 7 p.m. when an unknown man, who appeared to be intoxicated, asked her if she wanted a ride.

"She stopped in confusion and the male grabbed her by the arm and attempted to pull her toward him," said LeClair.

The teen quickly broke free and pedalled to safety - but not before getting a good look at her potential abductor.

The man was described as being of slim to average build, around six-feet tall (1.8m), with dark skin. He is possibly aboriginal, the girl noted, with graying black hair that was short to average in length. She also noticed a possible scratch or scar above his right eye, moles on his face and that he was missing several teeth, including one of his front teeth.

At the time of the incident, the man was reportedly wearing torn dark jeans, a baggy t-shirt, possibly orange, and carrying a dark cloth bag.

Three friends arrested for obstructing police

There's no obstructing the power of friendship.

Obstructing police officers attempting to arrest your drunken pal, however? Well, that's a different matter entirely.

On Sunday, May 10, police officers noticed a man in the village urinating in public. They also observed a second male consuming open liquor who appeared to be "very intoxicated," noted LeClair.

When questioned by police, the man refused to provide officers with his ID and denied having open liquor. He then "violently resisted attempts to place him in a police vehicle," LeClair said, while his friend "continuously tried to grab an officer's sleeve and vest."

Both men, a 29-year-old from Whistler and 29-year-old from St. Albert, Alta. were subsequently arrested.

A third friend, a 32-year-old Edmonton woman, was also nabbed for obstruction as she "repeatedly tried to grab police officers and pull them away from her friends."

Whistler officer honoured for helping to reduce impaired driving

It just goes to show a police officer is never really off duty.

On her way home from an awards ceremony recognizing police officers who've made a significant contribution to improving B.C.'s roads, Whistler RCMP Cst. Bridgette Lens proved why she deserved the honour.

"(Lens and another officer) were travelling on Highway 99 near Furry Creek when Cst. Lens observed a Bentley Continental and a BMW M-3 travelling at excessive speeds," LeClair said. "She caught them going 187km/h in a 90 zone."

Lens was recognized as part of Alexa's Team, named after four-year-old Alexa Middelaer, who was killed by a drunk driver seven years ago, a program that honours municipal and RCMP officers who have gone above and beyond in reducing the number of impaired drivers on the road.

In 2014, Lens was responsible for removing 27 impaired drivers from the road.

The Squamish team, made up of Cst. Matthew Innes, Cst. Thomas Leydier and Cst. Rock Benoit, nabbed a total of 167 impaired drivers last year.

Alexa's Team members have processed more than 66,000 sanctions for alcohol and drug-related offences since 2010.

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